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USDA SEEKS COMMENT ON DRAFT PEST RISK ASSESSMENT ON HONEY BEES IMPORTED FROM AUSTRALIA INTO THE UNITED STATES

March 15, 2010

The U.S. Department of Agriculture’s Animal and Plant Health Inspection Service (APHIS) is announcing to the public that it has prepared an evaluation of the pest risks associated with the importation of honey bees from Australia.  The draft pest risk assessment considers potential pest risks involved in the importation of honeybees into the United States from Australia after concerns that exotic honey bee pathogens or parasites may have been introduced into Australia.  APHIS is making the draft pest risk assessment available to the public for review and comment.

This action is published in today’s March 15 Federal Register.   

Consideration will be given to comments received on or before May 14.  You may submit comments by either of the following methods:

Comments are posted on the Regulations.gov Web site and also can be reviewed at USDA, Room1141, South Building, 14th St. and Independence Ave., S.W., Washington, D.C., between 8 a.m. and 4:30 p.m., Monday through Friday, excluding holidays.  To facilitate entry into the comment reading room, please call (202) 690-2817.

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Note to Reporters:  Public notices and other APHIS information are available on the Internet and through Really Simple Syndication (RSS) feeds.  Go to the APHIS news release page at http://www.aphis.usda.gov and click on the “Newsroom” button to view and/or sign up to receive releases via the RSS feed link.  For additional information about this topic contact
Alyn Kiel at (301) 734-5222 or by e-mail at alyn.g.kiel@aphis.usda.gov.

USDA is an equal opportunity provider, employer and lender.  To file a complaint of discrimination, write:  USDA, Director, Office of Civil Rights, 1400 Independence Avenue, S.W., Washington, D.C.  20250-9410 or call (800) 795-3272, or (202) 720-6382 (TDD).

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